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Merrill Downgrades Archer-Daniels-Midland

Merrill Lynch downgrades Archer-Daniels-Midland (ADM) to neutral from buy on valuation.

Analyst Leonard Teitelbaum says he downgraded Archer-Daniels-Midland, given its recent price appreciation and the fact that the stock is now trading very close to his price objective.

He says Archer-Daniels-Midland currently carries 16.0 times its p-e multiple on his $1.55 calendar year 2005 earnings per share estimate. He notes this a premium to the Commodity group multiple of 14 times to 15 times and believes Archer-Daniels-Midland is fully valued.

Teitelbaum maintains $1.50 fiscal 2005 (ending June) earnings per share and $1.60 fiscal 2005 estimates. He emphasizes that this is strictly a valuation call.

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